Swim does not believe this will happen
From the rules:
Seems like wishful thinking to me. No one is going to legalise drugs because the majority of society BELIEVES that prohibition is working and no one of importance is saying anything that contradicts that.
I wouldn't be overly pessimistic. Important people sometimes speak up for the need of drug legalization but are generally suffocated by their political opponents. I think this change needs more time than 10 years though.
I'm not necessarily that pessimistic. I do believe that eventually drug legalization will take place, because in the end, prohibition is not working. I only think that it will take place when society is ready to accept it as a possibility and that is probably not going to happen in the next ten years without some influential figures speaking up.
Very wishful thinking that ten years would suffice for such a radical change. Ecstasy is safer than aspirin? I wonder if he compared the deaths per year attributed to each and went on to say something as crazy as that. It kind of takes away his credibility.
Guess what guys, the more that you believe something is not possible, the more likely it is not to happen.
Regarding the comparison of ecstasy with aspirin. Whatever the statistics might say, one way or the other, it is VERY important to remember when engaging in this debate that any ecstasy related incident is talking about someone who has not taken MDMA, but a mixture of compounds including an unknown ammount of MDMA, made and distributed by an UNREGULATED system, within the constraints of ILLEGALITY.
SWIM too was a bit concerned when he read the aspirin part. Regardless of the exact facts on side effects & deaths attributed to the two drugs - when reading it the impression is he has picked up that statement from elsewhere (and not necessarily checked up himself on the validity) [As mentioned above^ he also used the word ecstasy as opposed to MDMA which is a potential minefield]
No problem if it holds true 100% or he can back up this claim (maybe he has done the research himself) but as there are going to be MANY people strongly against his idea it only takes one incorrect fact for his arguement to be picked to pieces and like SWIY says his credibility ruined.
SWIM would hope that wouldn't be the case as his important point "prohibition doesn't work" IS a very valid one and it takes a strong person to speak out.
^one step forwards, three steps backwards.
Interesting it does not mention the idea of pure pharmaceutical grade MDMA once in that article [as used in clinical trials for PTSD]. You would hope if important discussions were taking place the distinction between the pure compound and what is labelled as "ecstasy" (which can include meth, BZP. bad impurities + whatever else) on the street would have been made.
Moral of the story: Keep to the facts and only claim something publicly if you can back any statement up with evidence. Unfortunately it seems loosing ones job may have happened regardless (although the aspirin comment may have made that a definite)
i think drugs could and very probably will become more acceptable than they are now,in the near future. maybe not completely decriminalized,but cannabis and heroin should really be more accepted in a 'civilized society'.
No one thought cannabis would be downgraded. Minority's turn into majoritie's and vice versa, its all about the attitudes and standards of morality which the ' powers that be' have towards the current 'substance use problem'
Of course they're trying to make him quit, the guy is personally undermining the current governmental brianwashing. 10 years is very fast, I know a large proportion of society do not want to see any more drugs legalised, mostly due to them happily not knowing about all the new drugs that are available. I think if he really wants to make a stand he should start talking about all the deaths attributed to gang wars around London, that'd really hit home.
SWIM wish this were true, but i have a feeling that at least in the good ol states it will never be the money generated thorough both illegal sales and incarceration out weigh what (massively) what they can make if they legalize. Think of all the probation officers, police workers and special task force members that wont be needed in that case.
Born in Amsterdam, Swim and lot of his friends believed in the seventies that legalisation wasn't far away. Nowadays, thirty to fourty years later, legalisation is further away then it ever was.
"-although any dose of ecstasy can kill-" says Peter Stoker, a man of superior intellect. Now just look at all of the amazingly accurate evidence that validates his statement. It seems very unfortunate that Rick Brunstrom will probably not receive a signnificant amount of support, considering how most of the population strives to be obedient minions of their oppressive, illiberal governments. Legalization would be especially nice for Swim because he believes that there are too many fools walking the planet that survive only because of the accomplishments achieved by more reputable ancestors. Anyway, his thought is that people who choose to abuse substances rather than use them should be able to pay with their lives if they want to, they should have the freedom to. They are obviously not of any "natural selection", as Darwin would say, and Spencer would properly conclude that they are unfit for survival.
Hey Robertone, when you say born in msterdam, let me ask you, what was the atmosphere in Amsterdam when you were very young. When did the whole Dutch thing start with its more health based approach to drugs. And everybody, don't forget, it was actually England, that as far back as the 1920's instituted a drug addiction registry and tried prescribing many addictive drugs to people who said they just couldn't break their habit. It has the potential to totally short circuit the whole drugs industry, I'm telling you. And still there are a few select [lucky] individuals in England who still get vials of prescription heroin, and elsewhere I've heard some government offers it at $8 a pop.
Here in Australia we have some old commissioners who go on about it, and they say "Look, gambling off the track used to be illegal, and then we set up the TAB [government betting agency] and subsumed almost the entire illegal gambling industry overnight. We co-opted the situation back into government control, took it away from private criminal interests. The practice had been going on since time immemorial, basically we couldn't stop it, so instead we transformed it, and simultaneously saved for the public a big cut of the money that was going straight to crime, and reduced the social impact of the often violent SP betting operations that we replaced."
He went on to say that the drug trade was doomed to a similar fate, and he felt it truly was inevitable, only a matter of time before it too was taken up by the government, decriminalised and regulated. He was not pilloried in the media. All police at that high level of policy, I believe are entitled to legitimately talk about the philosophy and purpose of policing, and to talk about laws that need to be changed. He was not saying the law should be ignored, nor was he saying that his police would not pursue present cases vigorously, but merely saying that at the level of legislation, we should have another look at so called "prohibition" and who it really benefits. [Here's a hint: it ain't society]
There was a very similar article to this in the Mirror yesterday (I found out at about 11pm when my friends dragged me to a pizza place and i sat down reading the paper). Next to the article there was a "pros and cons" of legalising all drugs, the cons were in my opinion very poorly put together arguments that were entirely propoganda related, however the average reader would have struck home on the last point which said
Damn the primary-recency effect.
Heres the full should all drugs be legalised section.
Brunstrom drugs views 'dangerous'
Brunstrom drugs views 'dangerous'
Richard Brunstrom acknowledges his is a minority view
An MP has attacked "very dangerous" claims by North Wales Police chief constable Richard Brunstrom that ecstasy is safer than aspirin.
The chief constable also predicted the "inevitable" legalisation of all drugs within the next decade.
Rhondda MP Chris Bryant said Mr Brunstrom had "extraordinary" opinions and an "obsession" with publicity.
But Mr Brunstrom was backed by police authority member Terry Renshaw, who said his views were based on research.
Mr Bryant said: "I think these are very dangerous views. Ecstasy is not a safe drug and the people who sell ecstasy to youngsters in the Rhondda also sell heroin and the whole shooting range of drugs.
"Drugs have been one of the major challenges that the Rhondda has had to face since the mines [closed]."
He went on: "When you start buying [drugs] from somebody the whole sweetie counter is available to you. And we need to do more to disrupt the supply chain."
Chris Bryant says drugs have blighted his Rhondda constituency
Mr Brunstrom, who has campaigned for drugs like heroin to be made legal, told BBC Radio 4's Today programme how he believed a move towards decriminalisation was "10 years away".
The chief constable said repealing the Misuse of Drugs Act would destroy a major source of organised crime.
Mr Brunstrom, who acknowledged that his was a minority view, also said he thought ecstasy was safer than aspirin.
He said: "If you look at the government's own research into deaths you'll find that ecstasy, by comparison to many other substances - legal and illegal - is comparably a safe substance."
Drug law reform
But Mr Bryant said he believed "all drugs are dangerous" and the long-term side effects of certain drugs, such as cannabis, were only now coming to light.
He said he thought Mr Brunstrom, whose tough stance on speeding drivers is also widely reported, was "obsessed with his own publicity".
A spokesman for DrugScope, the UK's leading independent centre of expertise on drugs, said it believed the legalisation of drugs within the next decade was unlikely.
"Neither the current government nor the leaders of the other parties show any inclination towards drug law reform in the near future," he said.
"And in fact this government has already suggested its desire and its looking closely at reclassifying cannabis from class C to B."
Flintshire councillor and North Wales Police Authority member Terry Renshaw said Mr Brunstrom had his full support.
Mr Renshaw said everyone who referred to Mr Brunstrom as the "mad mullah from Colwyn Bay" should read documents on drugs legalisation he presented to the police authority.
He said while anyone using illegal drugs was criminalised, people were still allowed to buy alcohol and cigarettes, and refusing to examine the issue was "ostrich syndrome".
He said that while North Wales Police were very pro-active in fighting illegal drugs use, he felt it was a waste of resources, with the more drugs taken off the streets, the more that arrived.
My Letter to the MP
And the reply
Ok, well Id like to know who here knows people that are against drugs or have never taken an illigal substance in their life.
Re: Brunstrom drugs views 'dangerous'
About the best resource that I know of for the relative harm caused by different drugs is "Development of a rational scale to assess the harm of drugs of potential misuse", which was published in The Lancet in 2007.
Here's a link to a copy in the DF file archive: http://www.drugs-forum.com/forum/local_links.php?action=jump&id=1561&catid=15
It's been quoted a few times in the press, often with the infamous graph shown below, but it's quite important to read the whole paper, because it explains the concept of "harm" that they use in the graph. This bit is often missed out of the press reports, which often results in misinformed comments about the graph.
I think that this is probably a good reference to use if you want to take the discussion further.